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And the battle is long

About a year ago, Hubby was diagnosed with dementia. It wasn’t ‘bad’, just more forgetful, and sometimes he would get so focused on something that it would be the only thing he could concentrate on.

A year has passed, x-rays, tests every few months, medications… The medications slow progression, what’s lost is ‘gone’. The tests show how the condition is progressing.

I don’t need those tests. I see. When he looks at me, trying to remember how to work the microwave. When he has to be reminded to shower, “Didn’t I just do that”?

As his skills and abilities decrease, and his needs for cues, clues and assistance grow, frustration does too.

He gets angry because he can’t remember or do things and I get angry because I feel like my life is imploding, turning me into a nagging shrew.

Gain or Loss?

When we first moved to the Ozarks, back in 1959, many of the people here still used the old dialect too. Many Ozarkians were transplanted from Appalachia. As I grew older and attended high school, teachers tried to correct us into American English.

As an adult, moving around the US and raising a family, we ran into many other accents, pronunciations, idioms and dialects. Those too were added to our family speech.

For the most part, we have been homogenized into the main stream. After many years, we returned to the Ozarks, and discovered the people don’t talk as I remember. I find myself often missing the aproned or overall (overhaul) clad elders and the music of the language they used.

What you might do, if you have the flu

Before the sun came up this morning, a knock sounded on our door. There he was, our woodsman neighbor, Izzy Wright! It’s been a while sinch he’s been by.

Izzy is one of those who still lives much off the land and stays away from town folk and their ‘silliness’ as much as possible.

In a rare trip to town, he had heard I had the flu, and in an inside pocket of his tattered coat had brought me a bottle of his “guaranteed” medicine.

And so, from the old home remedies we have
Elderberry Elixir
Yes, it’s a thing, and good for colds and flu.
1 C fresh or 1/2 C dried elderberry
3 C water
1 C raw honey, (local is best if you can)
1 – 2 tsp turmeric
1 cinnamon stick*
1 Tbs powdered ginger*
2-3 whole cloves*
*Spices optional, but recommended
In a saucepan, combine elderberry, water and spices and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 20-30 minutes. Once liquid has reduced, mash the berries to release their remaining juices. Allow the mixture to cool and then strain. Squeeze or press out the mash to get the last remaining bits of goodness. Combine with raw honey and bottle. (Do not combine with honey when mixture is hot. You will lose the benefits of the raw honey). This elixir will keep about a month in the fridge.
Dosing? We try to do it with 1 or 2 Tbsp. every 4 hours if you are ill or 2 Tbsp once a day for prevention.
Often mix the dose in some green tea or warm lemonade.

Izzy also says that a little ‘strong drink’ (I suspect moonshine from his hidden still) makes this emven more effective, “cause it’ll let you rest.”

It isn't just Martin Luther King Jr. day

I am always interested in odd things, this led to a calendar that lists both serious and somewhat odd holidays.

And the holidays for January 20 are:

Martin Luther King Jr. Birthday , celebrated on the third Monday, a man who dreamed of a day of peace on earth, goodwill to men.

National Buttercrunch Day ?

National Cheese Lover Day, this one is easy to celebrate. My refrigerator holds cream cheese, American Cheese, Gouda, Mozzarella, Parmesan, and colby jack.

Penguin Awareness Day It’s easy to be aware of penguins today, the weather is COLD and we may finally get a few snowflakes.

What would you celebrate?

It's for the Children

I would like to send a shout out to Childrens Hospitals.

Back in the 1980’s I had my first encounter with the totally dedicated, incredible doctors, nurses and other staff at a Childrens Hospital. My youngest child was being treated in the oncology ward.

In the years since, I have run into others whose children were treated, at many Children specific hospitals around the country. St. Jude, Boston’s Floating Hospital, St. Louis Childrens among others.

Currently, I have a baby niece in NICU in a childrns hospital here in MO. Born ten weeks early and having already had brain surgery, she is doing well.

There is also a nephew, there for a neck fracture that happened oin a vehicle accident. Yesterday was his 4th birthday, and he recieived a visit from his favorite hero Batman. He now has his custom made immobilizer and should be home today.

These are minor things in the day of those doctorsand nurses and of course, not all cases turn out well. I tip my hat and give a shout to all of you.

How did that happen?

Daughter Tara, presented a challege the other day. She’d found a link for an afghan project for us to do.

Tara is doing the knit afghan. I recently gave away most of my knitting supplies and a large stash of yarn. However, I kept a crochet hook and some worsted yarn to give my hands something to do while watching TV.

In the God sees a need, or odd coincidences category, Grandson Brett bought me a fine set of hooks for a Christmas gift. Crochet will be my method.

My home scholed neighbor age 15, is joining me in crafting this one, so it won’t be just a TV time project. Another coincidence, or gift from God, she arrived bearing a gift of arthritis compression gloves.

Those gloves are, for me a miracle. Donning them, I found some pain relief in minutes!

#lionbrandyarn #mylifeinyarn #travelingafghans #travelingcrochetafghan #travelingknitafghan 

Little known holidays Jan. 6

Did you know, one day last week was National Spaghetti Day? Or, that January 6 is National Cuddle Day and National Bean Day?

Those don’t seem to go together very well. I’m not sure I would want to cuddle someone who had eaten a lot of beans.

The sun is up, gilding the treetops on Sunrise Ridge, bright and beautiful. When I filled the feeders, the sky was alight with gentle pink clouds against the fading darkness.

Now, birds, bright and sober colors, are vying for the seeds. Their antics bring some cheer into the kitchen as I watch.

once more

It’s been so long, so much has gone on. Of course, things have changed, things do.

Learning to live with auto-immune diseases and watch a partner of 50+ years slide into several health issues has been the adventure. No energy left for much else. Then realization! If I intend to remain a person, I have got to reach out in whatever way I can.

Hiding away, a social life much diminished, the responsibilities ofbeing a care giver takes a toll. Suddenly you realize the phone doesn’t ring, except reminders for appointments or robo-calls.

No one stops by, they never know if you will be home or if it’s a good time. You know you are lonely, but what can you do?

So I am coming back here, to try to re-start my blogging effrts. If no one reads it, at least I have done something.

Thank you and have a good day

What mold? Where do I fit?

So, tell me, how many nearly 70-year-old women trudge out to the woods with a weapon to help provide winter food?

Yesterday, we had venison tenderloin, biscuits, gravy and green beans for dinner.  Compliments of yours truly, and not only the cooking!
I was cooking this meal when I got a visit from the game warden to check on my kill.

Hubby took over the stove duties while I walked the officer out to my spot, showed him where the deer went down and told him the reason I had not got my tag until yesterday morning – because of ‘MEN’ who harass you while standing in line to get them and those who make fun of you because ‘this year you were not planning to hunt with the crossbow’ finally aggravate you enough to go print out your tag.

Last week, I went to get Hubby’s and the man behind me made several snarky and down right men remarks about women hunting, finally asking if I did, I answered ‘yes’, his next remark “Yeah, sure you do!” made me so angry I did not even attempt to purchase mine at the time.

I know he arrived because I got a deer the day I got the tags. We have been watching the wildlife on our game cameras, so have a good idea of the patterns of travel and times they move through. A small buck chose to travel into the path of my crossbow bolt shortly after I got set up.

I even had to show him I could use the crossbow and scope. He seemed to be a bit impressed. I explained Hubby had purchased it last year, and I got pretty good with it, though I did not do it during hunting season.

He wanted to know how long I had been hunting.  The answer – many years!

I told him the big set of antlers in the living room was mine from a few years back. Really? REALLY!

Granted, I had to have help from Hubby and a grandson to get the deer from point A to point B, but nothing is perfect and I do know my limitations.

Anyway, all is well… next time I will try not to ‘get’ a deer the day I get my tags.

Good help is not so hard to find… Jelly 101

Out in my yard is a ‘blueberry tree’, every year we get plenty of berries to keep the family and some select friends happy.

We have been picking for a week or so and have over a gallon in the fridge.

I called out for help this morning and my grand-daughter-in-law and 3 of the greats arrived about 7:30, ready for work.

Giving the berries one last rinse, the 4 & 5 year olds measured the needed 4.5 cups into a bowl. Seven year old carefully measured sugar into another bowl.

The berries were poured into a stainless steel pan and the three took turns mashing them with a spoon or their hands. (This step requires LOTS of handwashing.)

With careful supervision, 1.3 cup of lemon juice and a box of Sure-jel goes in the pan. Then it is Grand-daughter’s turn, stirring and heating to a boil. While this is going on, the younger three help prepare the half  and quarter pint jars for the finished product.


When the rolling boil is reached, the sugar is dumped in, stirred some more and allowed to boil hard for 1 minute.

Over on the table, jars sit ready and Mom fills them, each child takes a turn handing over a flat and ring for sealing. We had 7 jars, so each got two turns and I had to hand one.


As the jars were placed in the boiling water bath, kids armed with spoons, scraper, and the ‘jelly dipper’, scraped the remains from the pan.

It was a good morning!IMG_0197IMG_0198IMG_0199IMG_0205